Malika Jones, 22, was arrested Feb. 16 and charged with first-degree murder after she knifed her 57-year-old mom, Inell Jones, in the chest in the kitchen of their Rahway, NJ, home, police said. as the rowed over the younger woman’s “living situation”.
The daughter had been on academic leave from Barnard since last spring and was taking classes at Borough of Manhattan Community College before an expected return to the all-female school. For the time Malika Jones moved back home.
The two adult women cohabiting under the same roof led to tension and the pair got into a fight over over Malika’s “living situation” and going back to school.
Inell Jones, told her daughter that it was time to go back to school. which led to a huge row in the kitchen of their New Jersey home. The argument ended with the death murder of the older woman, court documents say.
The arrest is yet another campus tragedy for Barnard, which was rocked in December by the stabbing death of freshman Tessa Majors.
Takina a leave from Barnard Malika Jones had gone to live in the small Rahway home where she was raised, mostly by her hairstylist mother after her parents divorced.
George Mars, a 72-year-old tenant in the home, told police he heard the mom and daughter fighting that day, starting at 7 a.m., according to a prosecutor’s affidavit.
That afternoon, Mars told authorities that the mother yelled that the daughter “cut herself” and needed to go the hospital, but the elder Jones then spent about 20 minutes filling bags with canned goods for donations, the affidavit says.
Mars told responding officers that he then heard what sounded like dishes breaking in the kitchen and, about 20 minutes later he said, Malika Jones came toward him yelling, “She tried to hurt me.”
The daughter called police shortly after 3 p.m. and her mother was pronounced dead at 3:28 pm.
Malika had a superficial cut on her wrist, according to the affidavit, which said “a large common kitchen knife” was found near the body.
Jones is being held in Union County Jail.
The murder suspect’s lawyer Hickerson-Breedon, Jones’ lawyer has already offered a self-defense argument.
“We believe that this is a case of self-defense”.
Jones “loved her mother very much,” Hickerson-Breedon said
“For a young woman that has been a model student, model citizen with no criminal history whatsoever, to just all of the sudden be charged with a first-degree offense without any sort of justification — it’s just not practicable,” he insisted.
Hickerson-Breedon would not address why Jones was on leave from the school.
Jones attended the private Gill St. Bernard’s school where she competed on a robotics team and made the honor roll. She won an early decision acceptance to Barnard, a prestigious college that is part of Columbia University.